Soldiers of Sunrise and Theater of Fate

V1: 1985-1991

VIPER was formed in 1985 by Andre Matos (vocals), brothers Pit Passarell (bass) and Yves Passarell (guitar), Felipe Machado (guitar) and Cássio Audi (drums). The first show was at the traditional Lira Paulistana theater, in São Paulo, on April 8th. At the time, everyone in the band was still teenagers. The band then started to perform on the local circuit and recorded a demo “The Killera Sword”, which was well accepted by the fans after being released on the program “Rockambole”, presented by Beto Peninha on 97 FM radio. They were invited by the label created by Rock Brigade magazine to record their first album, “Soldiers of Sunrise”, released in 1987. The album was praised by the specialized press and the band was invited to perform the opening show for Motörhead at the Ibirapuera Gymnasium, in São Paulo, for more than ten thousand people.

Cássio Audi left the band and, after a quick transition from drummer Mário Augusto, Val Santos took over the drumsticks during a pre-recording of the second album. In the studio, however, English producer Roy Rowland chose to record it with a studio drummer (Sergio Facci, then in Vodu). In 1989, VIPER released the historic “Theatre of Fate”, considered to this day one of the greatest albums in the history of Brazilian heavy metal. The pioneering style that mixed power metal and classical music led VIPER to become a respected name around the world. Songs like “Living For the Night”, “A Cry From the Edge”, “Prelude to Oblivion” and “Moonlight” made this album an instant classic. Its success led the band to sign an international contract to release it in Japan (JVC), Europe (Massacre Records) and the United States (Empire Records).

From Evolution to Tem pra Todo Mundo

V2: 1992-1996

Due to musical differences with the rest of the band and focusing on music school, Andre Matos decided to leave VIPER at the end of the “Fate on Tour” in 1990 – a tour that featured Guilherme Martin on the drums. Bassist Pit Passarell took over the vocals and the band began to compose the third album. With the entry of new drummer Renato Graccia, the band went to Germany to record the album “Evolution”, with a new sound and attitude.

Recorded in the cities of Munich, Hannover and Hamburg, “Evolution” brought a fresh and heavier band, with songs that also became big hits such as “Rebel Maniac”, “Evolution”, “The Shelter” and “The Spreading Soul”. VIPER went on tour in Brazil and performed the opening shows for two outstanding bands: Black Sabbath for 20,000 people, and Metallica, in two legendary performances at the crowded Parque Antártica stadium.

With the invitation to perform in Europe and Japan, the band’s first world tour became a reality. They played in Germany, Austria, Hungary and Switzerland, as well as Japan. In Tokyo the band recorded their first live album, “Maniacs in Japan”, an intense live album that unquestionably captured all the band’s energy on stage. To celebrate the Japanese tour the band released the EP “Vipera Sapiens”, with songs recorded during the sessions of “Evolution” in Germany.

In 1994, the band was signed by Roadrunner and went to the United States for the first time to record the album “Coma Rage”. The sessions took place in Los Angeles, California, and were produced by Bill Metoyer, who had previously worked with Slayer. The result was the band’s heaviest album, with punk influence evidenced in hits such as “Coma Rage”, “I Fought the Law” (a version of The Clash) and “Makin Love”. Back from the USA, VIPER performed at one of the most memorable shows of their career: the Monsters of Rock Festival, at the Pacaembu stadium, where they shared the stage with Kiss, Black Sabbath, Suicidal Tendencies, and Slayer.

In 1996, the band embarked on an unusual adventure: after being signed by Castle, they moved to Rio de Janeiro and recorded “Tem Pra Todo Mundo”, an album that they experienced in the field of Brazilian rock and, for the first time, sung in Portuguese. Despite the controversy with the most radical fans, the single “8 de Abril” entered the charts and its video was number one on MTV. Castle ran into legal problems and the band, tied to their contract, had their activities paralyzed.

All My Life

V3: 2005-2009

In 2005, the band returned with Ricardo Bocci on vocals, Val Santos on guitar and Renato Graccia on drums, as well as founding members Pit Passarell and Felipe Machado. In August 2005 they released the DVD “Living For the Night – 20 Years of VIPER”, a documentary containing interviews and videos from the band’s entire career. At that time, Andre Matos had already founded two worldwide famous bands, Angra and Shaman; Yves Passarell joined Brazilian popular rock act Capital Inicial, and Guilherme Martin formed Toyshop. In 2007, VIPER released the album “All My Life”, which featured Andre Matos on vocals for “Love is All”. They started the tour in the same year with guest guitarist Marcelo Mello replacing Val Santos, but, due to personal projects, in 2009 the band announced a new break. Felipe Machado began dedicating himself to journalism and Pit Passarell became a composer for other artists, such as Capital Inicial.

To Live Again Tour and return of Andre Matos

V4: 2012-2015

In 2012, invited by the management company Wikimetal, VIPER announced the “To Live Again” tour to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the album “Soldiers of Sunrise”. With Andre Matos, Pit Passarell, Felipe Machado, Guilherme Martin and guitarist Hugo Mariutti, who played with Matos at Shaman, they went out to Brazil and Latin America playing the full versions of albums “Soldiers of Sunrise” and “Theatre of Fate”. During the tour, the band opened for Kiss in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro and recorded the live CD/DVD “To Live Again – Live in São Paulo” in 2013. In September 2013, they played a historic gig at Rock in Rio, fulfilling an old dream of the teenagers who got together in 1985, the very year of the first Rock in Rio.

In 2015, guitarist Felipe Machado released his first solo album, “FMSolo”.

New album with Leandro Caçoilo

V5: 2016 – Today

After Rock in Rio, Andre returned to Shaman and, in 2019, the big tragedy struck: the singer died after suffering a sudden heart attack at home. Many tributes were made, including the re-recording (with Andre’s vocals) of “The Spreading Soul”, one of the most beautiful compositions in the band’s history. The song was produced by Mauricio Cersosimo in New York City and a now legendary video was recorded during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Pit Passarell released his first solo album in 2020, “Praticamente Nada”.

Since 2016, VIPER counts on vocals with Leandro Caçoilo, who prepares, with Pit Passarell, Felipe Machado and Guilherme Martin, the band’s first album in 14 years.